Spotlight 14/2021: A marathon, not a sprint!

Our motto is not about the future in general, but about the future in Christ. There is a big difference, District Apostle Tshitshi Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo says. We are talking about God’s plan of redemption, the beginning and end of which we know.

Our annual motto is firmly established among the youth in our district. In fact, I would even say that it couldn’t have come at a better time. The environment in which most of them live makes them fear for the future. Add to this the current COVID-19 health crisis with its far-reaching implications and it is almost impossible to detect a future let alone focus on it.

Does this mean that we retreat in fear, to the point of declaring: “Life doesn’t make any sense to me any more”?

Maybe we should take a moment and take a closer look at the term “future”. “Future” is defined as that which will be, as time yet to come. There is indeed no measure; time seems to be infinite in its realm. This is indeed so and this way of looking at the future can only leave one frightened.

As children of God, however, we look at the future in a different way, and our Chief Apostle is absolutely clear about this. He suggests that we look at our future in terms of Christ. In this respect, there is no more uncertainty; instead, a complete plan has been rolled out. We call it the plan of salvation or redemption. Even though no dates are specified, the sequence of events is clearly defined, and we even know the beginning and have an idea of what the end will be.

We are not talking about those who do not want to meet their earthly obligations and for whom Jesus Christ means escape from reality. We will continue to struggle for our material survival and have to realise that our existence does not necessarily have anything to do with material success. There is nothing reprehensible about this, but as Christians we should take the time to look ahead to our future with Christ and keep our eyes fixed on the Lord and His coming.

We will discover that Christ lends

  • visibility: through the light of the Holy Spirit, we can read the present situations differently. We will be able to say: “Whatever happens, Christ is coming soon.”
  • meaning to our existence: God’s plan of salvation allows us to recognise a sequence of divine actions that follow a plan made by God (CNAC 4.4).

The Chief Apostle recommends that we actively prepare for the return of Jesus Christ. If possible, let us opt for a marathon as a way of preparation rather than a sprint, because we do not have to run after the dates.

Oliver Rütten

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Tshitshi Tshisekedi
District Apostle, motto, Christ, our future